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Taylor Swift’s Speak Now new record releases tomorrow. It’s expected to be the biggest release this year. Some say it might sell Platinum (1 million) in its first week. If anybody can do it, Taylor probably can.

I’ve heard most of the record and I must say it’s pretty amazing. At times, I have a hard time believing that Taylor is only 19 or 20. She writes like a 45-year-old. Well, mostly…but it’s good. Really good. (And I’ve never been much of a fan…)

By now you’ve either heard or heard about the song “Dear John,” a tune that Taylor is believed to have written about a relationship? friendship? fling? with John Mayer. (Remember: Taylor sang harmony on one of the songs on John’s last record.)

Here are the lyrics…

Long were the nights
When the days once revolved around you
Counting my footsteps,
Prayin’ the floor won’t fall through, again
My mother accused me of losing my mind
But I swore I was fine

You paint me a blue sky and go back
And turn it to rain
And I lived in your chess game
But you changed the rules every day
Wonderin which version of you
I might get on the phone, tonight,
Well I stopped pickin’ up
And this song is to let you know why

Dear John,
I see it all now that you’re gone.
Don’t you think I was too young
To be messed with
The girl in the dress
Cried the whole way home
I shoulda known.

Well maybe it’s me
And my blind optimism to blame
Maybe its you and your sick need
To give love then take it away
And you’ll add my name
To your long list of traitors
Who don’t understand
And I’ll look back in regret
How I ignored when they said
Run as fast as you can

Dear John,
I see all it now that you’re gone
Don’t you think I was too young
To be messed with
The girl in the dress
Cried the whole way home

Dear John,
I see it all now it was wrong
Don’t you think nineteen’s too young
To be played by your dark twisted games
When I loved you so
I shoulda known

You are an expert at sorry
And keeping lines blurry
And never impressed by me
Acing your tests
All the girls that you run dry
Have tired lifeless eyes
Cuz you burned them out
But I took your matches
Before fire could catch me
So don’t look now
I’m shining like fireworks
Over your sad empty town

Oh woah oh

Dear John,
I see all it now that you’re gone
Don’t you think I was too young
To be messed with the girl in the dress
Cried the whole way home
I see all it now that you’re gone
Don’t you think I was too young
To be messed with
The girl in the dress
Wrote you a song
You should’ve known
You shoulda known
Don’t you think I was too young
You shoulda known.

Either way, it’s a good song. It’s an amazing song in some ways: Honest, melodic, a bit gritty…

So let’s assume the song is about John Mayer.

Is Taylor’s upfront, in-your-face honesty a good thing?

Does the fact that John Mayer is a celebrity make a difference? Is sometimes “honesty” better with a little ambiguity?

If the song, in fact, is about John Mayer, can it transcend the same way a song about a nameless jerk of a boyfriend might relate to Taylor’s audience?

Again, I like the song. I admire Taylor’s guts to put it out there. But honesty can backfire sometimes. Sometimes honesty can be seen as bitterness or gimmicky or even dishonest.

What do you think?

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